The Russian squad will face the Sichuan Blue Whales on 28 September in Chengdu and the Guangdong Tigers on 30 September in Shenzhen.
Fans will experience the best of both Chinese and European basketball with Turkish Airlines EuroLeague champs CSKA Moscow, CBA Champs Sichuan Blue Whales and CBA Semifinalists Guangdong Tigers.
CSKA Moscow, headed by French guard and 2015-16 EuroLeague MVP, Nando De Colo, is ready to travel to China this fall for two exhibition games that will take them to the cities of Chengdu and Shenzhen. The reigning EuroLeague champions will start their tour in Chengdu, on 28 September, where they will face reigning CBA champions Sichuan Blue Whales, and will continue in Shenzhen, were they will play the CBA semifinalists Guangdong Tigers on 30 September. CCTV5 and Tencent are set to broadcast the games in China.
This will be the second visit of CSKA Moscow to the Asian country within the EB World Tour, following their trip in 2007 that marked the first Euroleague Basketball showcase in China where they beat both Yao Ming’s Team China and the Sidney Kings in a tournament that also featured Benetton Treviso. Real Madrid, FC Barcelona, ALBA Berlin and Panathinaikos Athens have also represented Euroleague Basketball in China since then.
It will be the first tour within the new Joint Venture that EB has with media giant HBN (Beijing Hualu Baina Film & TV Inc.) that aims to make the top competition in Europe better known and loved by the countless basketball fans in China and beyond. With Euroleague China’s new permanent office fully operative since November 2015, some promising results have already been seen in its first season with a 25% growth in TV audience figures.
The tour will also go beyond the court with several other events that will expand Euroleague Basketball’s reach within the Chinese basketball community. Grass-roots, community events, coaching clinics and others will complete Euroleague Basketball’s experience in China. 16 players, staff and management making a total of 36 people are set to travel for CSKA Moscow to China on September 26, returning home on October 1.
One Team, Euroleague Basketball's corporate social responsibility programme, will be very present in this trip joining forces with the local governments to work with special communities that needs help. CSKA center Kyle Hines has been serving in his role as a One Team Global Ambassador for three consecutive seasons while team captain Victor Khryapa and club legend Sergey Tarakanov have been Ambassadors of CSKA's project collaborating with Suvorov Military School. A Gala Dinner will take place in both cities featuring experts, sports industry employees and business partners. An International Coaches Clinic is scheduled in Chengdu.
“A new era is about to start in European basketball with the revamped Turkish Airlines EuroLeague and 7DAYS EuroCup, therefore one will start in China as well” Jordi Bertomeu, President & CEO of Euroleague Basketball said. “We are very excited about the upcoming China Tour and we are organizing many different activities so the growing Chinese fans can experience and enjoy this cultural and sports exchange between the two continents”.
CSKA Moscow president and CEO Andrey Vatutin:
"It will be our second visit to China and I hope it will be as successful as the previous one: we won a prestigious tournament in 2007. We were glad to accept the invitation from Euroleague Basketball and our Chinese partners: the country's basketball market develops dynamically, it is important to occupy the niche there, to expand our fans base. We go to China as the best team in Europe and we will try hard to win, as usual, and to play spectacular basketball."
CSKA Moscow forward Andrey Vorontsevich:
"These kind of tours are always interesting, they give teams a chance to learn something new about the culture of a country which is not so well-known to many of us and it has basketball. Our trip to China in 2007 was memorable for me: our coaches let me have a serious role on the court for the first time, besides I had a chance to fight against Yao Ming in his prime. I am sure that we will be able to bring back again some good memories to Moscow."
Sichuan Blue Whales general manager Geng Jie:
''First of all, congratulations to CSKA Moscow for becoming the Turkish Airlines EuroLeague champion. As a club, Sichuan Blue Whales has a lot to learn from CSKA Moscow. We are extremely excited to host CSKA at our home city Chengdu. This is a rare opportunity to have a chance to play against such great team. It will be a treat to our fans in China to experience this game between two championship teams.''
Guangdong Tigers head coach Du Feng:
“We are very excited to have a chance to play against the current Turkish Airlines EuroLeague champion CSKA Moscow. CSKA is a European basketball powerhouse with many excellent players. I was present at this year’s Turkish Airlines EuroLeague Final Four in Berlin. CSKA’s high quality team defense, fast speed and high intensity playing style has made a deep impression on me. Playing against one of the best teams in the Turkish Airlines EuroLeague, CSKA Moscow, will help our players to gain a lot of valuable experience. I am very much looking forward to this game.“